Weekend Reading, 2.16.14
February 17, 2014

Weekend Reading | The Full Helping

For all of my (probably very irritating) talk lately about how much I heart winter, I can’t say that it wasn’t a joy to wake up this morning, step outside, feel the sun on my face, and realize that it was nearly 70 degrees in New Orleans. I’m here in Crescent City visiting my bestie, Chloe, and her husband, Knud. My trips here are always really special–not only a chance to spend quality time with people I love, but also a chance to enjoy this wonderful, unique city. I’ve been snapping lots of photos and making some tasty food today, so I’ll have some recaps soon. For now, though, weekend reading.


If you liked my raw linzer cookies this past week, don’t miss Ashlae’s raw almond linzer cookies, which feature a cherry chia jam and much, much better photos.

Screen Shot 2014-02-16 at 11.29.30 PM

A collaboration between three of my favorite vegan bloggers! Kristy and Chris from Keepin’ it Kind featured scrumptious vanilla almond fig granola parfaits over at Vegan Yack Attack.

Minty Pea and Potato Salad

A recipe that hints at the coming of spring! I loved this minty pea and potato salad at Vegalicious.


…But if you’re still in winter comfort food mode, Isa’s vibrant black eyed pea curry looks incredible.


Finally, I am so intrigued by Rika’s bok choy and shiitake mushrooms with gochujang vinaigrette–like all of her recipes, it sounds intensely flavorful (and is lovely to look at).


1. I had never heard of mendahen until I read this very illuminating and somewhat troubling article about the fish that is caught more than any other, by volume, in the continental United States by volume (and are used widely in Omega-3 fish oil supplements.

2. Props to Keri Kronin for writing about a growing trend of taxidermy in restaurants and stores. Unfortunately, this blatant celebration of the objectification of animals seems to be increasingly hip (it somehow reminds me of another trend I’ve seen, which is for young, popular restauranteurs to be posing with dead animal hides or carcasses in their arms). The article, featured on Our Hen House, is direct and insightful.

3. An article about refusal of doctors to give transplant organs to HIV patients. It’s wrapped around the story of Lamont Valentin, a 29-year-old man who was born with HIV in 1984, and was refused a lung transplant to manage his chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Sad, and forceful.

4. Short, useful explanation of hyponatremia, also known as water overdose. The condition, which results from severely excessive hydration, can be fatal.

5. I loved Laika Magazine’s interview with Kathy Stevens, of Catskill Animal Sanctuary. Kathy (whom I’ve met at a few speaking events/conferences is a tireless activist and animal rescuer, but she is also very dedicated to helping to draw out and foster compassion for animals among children. The article focuses on her work in this arena. A small excerpt:

…we’re an emergency rescue organization, but just as importantly, we’re a center to open hearts and minds—a place where people get kissed by cows in one moment, and in the next learn the horrifying realities of the beef and dairy industries. Epiphanies happen every weekend. A 2,500 pound steer licks a man’s face just as he’s learning why that steer is so huge, and how virtually all of the steer’s friends were killed either shortly after birth or at a few months of age. The steer and I are a…team: I present the disturbing realities of animal agriculture, the steer, acting just like a loving puppy does, forces the man to question a whole lot of assumptions. We encourage him to grow beyond his cultural conditioning.

It’s the same with children. In terms of our programming for them, our intention is to encourage the goodness that’s already in them, just as it was for the man and the steer. Our age-appropriate curriculum rewards and celebrates children’s compassion, commitment, and courage. It says, “You love animals?! We do, too!! What a great job you’re doing for them! Here’s how you can do even more for your animal friends!”

What a nice way to sum up the power of animal sanctuaries in general. It brought me back to my own very powerful experience at Woodstock FAS a few years ago (and the beginnings of my involvement with animal rights).


Hope you enjoy the reading, of course. I’ll check back from the Big Easy soon.


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  1. Thank you for sharing the article about Lamont Valentin. I am outraged that he had the opportunity to live and, instead, died on a bus. I feel sad that his child has to live without his father. I am dismayed that someone fully capable of enduring a transplant was denied one based on antiquated ideas of HIV.

  2. Thanks for sharing that article on taxidermy. The points on the animals always being the dominated and expendable are very interesting.

    The photographs of the recipes you’ve chosen are so lovely. I haven’t much been into fancy food preparation lately, but drooling over others efforts is still fun!

    • I agree, Emma — I’ve been running around too much to cook a lot, but it’s always lovely to look.

  3. I love the reads you come up with! Especially the fish one. I’m still making my transition to veganism. A mixture of nutritional fears (which I know are stupid but still societies dogmas have really impressed them on my mind) and my own habitual nature are slowly being overcome. One fear of mine is the Omega 3 in fish vs. flax, being adequate, so this is very interesting!

    • Sophie, a lot of people are terrified into thinking they need fish oil. It’s certainly not just you.

      FYI, flax oil alone may actually be less adequate than fish oil. But a vegan, algae-derived DHA supplement is a different story — I assume you already know this, but thought it was worth saying!

      • That’s always good to hear!!

        Yes I do know about the algae-DHA supplement. Is there any particular one you go for? I’ve got a B12 supplement too. Is it right that you have to ‘chew’ and not just swallow a B12 supplement?

        • I do the Deva supplement, though I don’t think it matters too much if you can find a vegan EPA/DHA. As for B-12, I’ve always done sublingual ones — but I’m not actually sure. I’ll find out.

  4. Gena, as always, GREAT links! I just found three new vegan blogs to read thanks to you sharing those amazing recipes!:) And give yourself some credit dear, your linzer cookie pictures were pretty awesome:) I also liked the article about the fish you provided. I find it so sad that more people aren’t aware of how many animals are killed everyday for products we often forget came with such sacrifice. If I could blink the world vegan tomorrow, I surely would. Until then, sharing information like this is one of the best things each of us can do:) PS- Little question for you… I’d like to start buying some of my clothes and shoes vegan when I can. Where do you get your things? I think you’re always dressed so cute!:)

  5. You are in one of my very favorite towns. One of the few places I’ve been where I felt like I was home as soon as I got there! Enjoy your trip!

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